Did Lingayat religion bet backfire on Cong?

There was widespread fear within the Congress in the run-up to the polls that the government’s decision to accord "religious minority" status on the Lingayat community would backfire. DH file photo

The consolidation of the dominant Lingayat and Vokkaliga communities seem to have worked against the Congress, which looks to be staring at a defeat going by the vote count trends. 

There was widespread fear within the Congress in the run-up to the polls that the government’s decision to accord "religious minority" status on the Lingayat community would backfire. 

Trends show that the BJP is gaining in the Lingayat-dominated Hyderabad-Karnataka and Mumbai-Karnataka regions. 

Similarly, the theory that the dominant Vokkaliga community has ganged up against Chief Minister Siddaramaiah seems ratified. Siddaramaiah is heavily trailing in the Chamundeshwari constituency, where incumbent JD(S) legislator G T Deve Gowda is placed with a comfortable lead. Trends show that the Congress is losing out to the JD(S) in the Vokkaliga belt of the Old Mysuru region. 

The ruling Congress was plagued with an inefficient campaign, in that the party ended up depending on its president Rahul Gandhi. Before Rahul started his pre-poll campaign in February, Siddaramaiah and state party president G Parameshwara had taken out separate campaigns, which pointed out that there was no unity among leaders. 

It is also said that an element of overconfidence had crept in. “If we yield to overconfidence, we will be in trouble,” Parameshwara had publicly said in March.

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Did Lingayat religion bet backfire on Cong?

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